Friday, 23 May 2014

A bad year in review

I feel like a broken record, scratched, repeating, I'm not in the greatest condition, worn out with a load of scuff marks. The last year or so has brought new meaning to the term "...a long day at the office..." and as someone who doesn't shy away from hard work or long hours, I’m buggered! 

I hate to sound morbid or sombre, it really isn't in my nature, but we've had a very average year and amongst many other things, my hunting has suffered. A week off hunting is hard to come by when juggling work, family and the ills and ailments that befall us every now and then. In 2013 I've hardly been able to put together a plan for a hunt, let alone get out there. Even my writing - and there's never been much of it - has all but stopped this year.

Last December and into January saw us busting bunnies very regularly and I found myself at one of my favourute spots almost weekly. With my two little girls in tow, retrieving the warm rabbits I shot which we would later dress for the pot by the holding yards; we had a great summer chasing rabbits.

A mate on the NSW Central Coast has extended an invite a number of times for a spot of rabbit shooting but there's always something on.  

It was last summer that my best pig hunting block, a property I have hunted very regularly since 1997 was sold again, this time to a large consortium who aren't at all interested in some fellow hunting hogs to give himself some time to just "be".  Way too profound for them.  Bring on the poison for the pigs on that block.

The first boar I rolled on this remote cattle station; I was 20 years old. Losing access to this block is truly the end of an era.

In June I was lucky enough to head out to my good mate Sam's place.  Our plan was to hunt chital together and I would stalk pigs and goats as the opportunities presented themselves. We lucked out on the deer, I had an opportunity on day one but I hesitated; that won't happen again!

But I did drop a grand old billy, all skin and bone, going through the motions of a slow and arduous death.  I also rolled a heavy-set boar one morning as he tried to sneak up a steep gully I was stalking for chital. A bit of decent shooting on my parts and a couple of very nice animals as a result.

And that was my hunting year.  Yep, that's it.

Beyond my hunting adventures, we did put a few things to bed that should allow my little tribe to flourish in 2014.  Our development application for a new house was approved after a 3-year ordeal!  What a drama that's been. The boss has had her back operation. I've had my eye surgery.  Surely we're about done?

There's a hunt brewing for the first week of January... let's hope that it's a sign of things to come.

Happy new year hunters.  Best of luck in the field for 2014.



  1. Like you, I had a busy year last year that pretty much precluded the level of activity I want for the blog. I'm planning to actively try to change that in 2014, but the truth is, we have lives to lead. Not many of us can eek a living out of the things we love best, so hunting is still a recreational pursuit (no matter how seriously we take it).

    At any rate, I'm looking forward to more tales from your neck of the woods. I've often harbored day dreams of a trip down there... maybe a split between diving the Barrier Reef and chasing wild hogs in the bush. I get to live some of that vicariously through your site... so thanks!

  2. Almost a full month down in the new year and I have enjoyed some success - more to come shortly.

    On an all-night drive to my hunting grounds, I had the sobering experience of being one of the first on the scene to a fatal road accident where a 4WD utility lost control. A timely reminder to take great care on the road, but also to enjoy your chosen pursuit as you never know when your time is up.

    Should you make the journey to this Great Southern land, be sure to drop me a line, there's always a place by my fire for a traveling hunter.

    1. I'll keep that in mind. Dunno when, or even if, but I'll definitely post you should the trip happen. Even if we don't get to hunt together, it would be good to meet up over a beer (or something).

      As far as coming up on that wreck... maybe it's just that hunters are on the road at odd hours, or maybe because we're just on odd roads, but I've been first on the scene to more than one bad-looking accident. Fortunately for my psyche, none of them have been fatal. That's a hard thing to see, but it is a solemn reminder, as you said... time is fleeting. Make the best of it.